Speak for Yourself

Claire Duffy's blog about public speaking and communication (in real life). Speak well, do well!

Special Occasion Speaking

First time speakers are often squaring up to taking the mike at a special occasion.  Maybe it’s your mate’s  21st or wedding,  someone has a birthday with a zero in … Continue reading

28/03/2013 · Leave a comment

Catching the waves of feminism

Shortly before  PM Julia Gillard’s  Misogyny Speech went viral, feminist  author and journalist Anne Summers  made her ‘Newcastle Speech’, arguing that  the extreme sexist and discriminatory  abuse Gillard was  subject to  breached federal … Continue reading

25/03/2013 · 4 Comments

‘Nuclear Weapons are Morally Indefensible’.

A question is asked, at length,  and an answer demanded. “And I’m going to give it to you!” retorts New Zealand Prime Minister David Lange,  “If you hold your breath … Continue reading

18/03/2013 · 1 Comment

Lovely Voices: Edward Tufte, the Chart Master

“Good information design  is clear thinking made visible” said Edward Tufte,  who wrote (and self-published)  The Visual Display of Quantitiative Information back in 1982. Tufte has been  a  statistician and professor emeritus of political science, statistics, and computer science at Yale … Continue reading

14/03/2013 · 2 Comments

Lovely Voices: Your Grandma, the voice of contentment

 This is an edited extract from a  post on http://egsforbreakfast.com/.  The fact that I had not read Winnie the Pooh is an indictment of everyone who has known me up … Continue reading

11/03/2013 · Leave a comment

It’s not write to attack Kate

“WRITER Hilary Mantel went from comparative obscurity to public enemy No1 last week.  It wasn’t an unguarded Facebook post, an ill-judged tweet or even a spur-of-the-moment insult. It was a … Continue reading

04/03/2013 · Leave a comment

Oscar speeches by numbers

Rebecca Rolfe, a  Georgia  Institute  of Technology masters  student, has analyzed  60 years of Academy Awards  speeches as part of a research project  on, wait for it, gratitude.   Her findings have been … Continue reading

26/02/2013 · Leave a comment

The science of convincing others to say “yes”

In 1984, Robert Cialdini, Regents’ Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Marketing at Arizona State University published “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.”  It’s a classic that every good communicator should read. Cialdini … Continue reading

21/02/2013 · Leave a comment

What DID Abraham Lincoln’s Voice Sound Like ?

Re-creating the voice of someone you’ve never  heard must be pretty daunting. Daniel Day Lewis’s  light squeak in the role of Abe Lincoln  has not made all movie goers happy, though … Continue reading

18/02/2013 · Leave a comment

The Big Finish, or how to end a speech with oomph.

We know that the audience’s attention is highest at the start of a speech, so you need to get their attention then, and keep it. Here is where you use … Continue reading

14/02/2013 · Leave a comment

Lovely Voices: David Attenborough, natural wonder.

David Attenborough’s conspiratorial whisper has made him the most trusted person in Britain, according to a recent Readers’ Digest poll. Attenborough is a magician.  He entrances and  intrigues us.  Fuelled by … Continue reading

10/02/2013 · Leave a comment

Advice for teachers: Look after your voice

If you were a professional violinist would you start each day by giving the instrument a good whack? Would you leave it out in the sun,  use it when you … Continue reading

06/02/2013 · Leave a comment

“Liar Liar… ” Ten ways to spot one

Hello everyone, time for more Tall Tales by Big Names. Lying in public, misuse of power, cheating and wrongdoing are headlines once again. Catch up  here  on  Lance Armstrong, whose … Continue reading

02/02/2013 · Leave a comment

I’m Jo and I’m an introvert. Here’s my speaking story.

So here’s the thing: you  have been working seriously in your chosen profession for over 20 years. You have  some credibility: diplomas, degrees, served on committees, taught, organised, managed…all that … Continue reading

29/01/2013 · 1 Comment

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